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Improving our health

A mature white oak

Here are some ways trees help our health:

Trees give us oxygen. Through photosynthesis, trees turn carbon dioxide into the oxygen we need to live.

Trees save lives. By capturing fine particles of air pollution, urban trees and forests are saving an average of one life every year in each of 10 US cities, according to a recent study. In New York City, for example, trees save an average of eight lives every year. Trees catch tiny particles from the air on their leaves and branches.

Trees make us healthier. There is a documented link between trees, green spaces, and mortality rates. Residents of tree‐lined communities have reported feeling healthier and been shown to have fewer cardio‐metabolic conditions than their counterparts; they are more likely to be physically active and less likely to be overweight or obese. Trees have been strongly linked to reduced symptoms of depression and increased life satisfaction. The presence of trees has also been proven to improve the condition of people with neurodegenerative disease.